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Go wide and get close with Mpow's clip-on MLens kit for your phone

Mpow is one of the leading authorities on Windows Phone accessories. We have taken a look at several of Mpow's Bluetooth accessories such as the Magneto Bluetooth headset and Armor Bluetooth Speaker. The company also offers several camera accessories and the MLens is an easy way to expand your Windows Phone camera's capabilities.

The MLens is a collection of three clip-on lenses that includes a macro, wide-angle and fisheye lens that clip onto your Windows Phone and sit on top of your built-in camera. Add-on lenses aren't always a success story, with a tendency to degrade image quality with their lesser optics. However, after using the MLens collection over the weekend, the results were surprisingly decent.

Mpow MLens Collection

The Mpow MLens is packaged with the three lenses, a small cleaning cloth and a plastic carrying case. The lenses break down as follows.

  • Fisheye Lens: 180-degree view with .33x magnification
  • Wide-Angle Lens: .36x magnification that greatly increases the focal length of the native lens
  • Macro Lens: Provides 20X magnification to your Windows Phone camera

The design of the lenses is simple: they're essentially clips that you slide over your phone, positioning the attached lens such that it rests on top of your camera. Because of the universal design of these clips, they can be attached to practically any with less than 1.18 inches (3cm) between the camera and the edge of the phone — including the front-facing camera. There is a rubber ring around the inside of the lens and the clip to prevent the attachment from sliding around and scratching your phone's body or screen.

Mpow MLens

I was able to fit the MLens on both rear and forward cameras on the Lumia 950 and 550 without issue. However, the rear camera sits too low on the Lumia 850 for the MLens to come close to fitting properly.

Mpow MLens

Proof is in the Pudding

While the MLens clip-on lenses appear well made and fit nicely on a Windows Phone, the key to their success is ultimately judged by the quality of the images they produce. For the most part, image quality was good with all of the lenses. However, there are limitations with each of the lenses worth noting.

Lumia 950 Lens View without MLens

The wide-angle lens did have considerable distortion along the edges of the frame. If my math is correct, it turns the 26mm lens on the Lumia 950 into a 10mm lens. While there is distortion present, that is not uncommon for such a wide-angle view. The above image was taken with the Lumia 950 without the lens attachment and the below is with the attachment.

Lumia 950 with the MLens wide-angle attachment

You do need to be careful to center your Windows Phone camera lens with the MLens or the edges of the clip-on lens will creep into the frame as well.

Mpow MLens Macro

The macro lens does a good job of pulling in detail for the smallest of subjects. However, the lens has a very limited focus range that will require you to be about half an inch away from your subject and the depth of field is very narrow. Working that close to your subject can limit the amount of light cast on your subject and fortunately, sp the macro lens has a clear plastic hood that will minimize any light loss.

Mpow MLens Macro

While the 20x magnification brings the tiniest of subjects into view, the macro lens is almost more of a microscope lens than a macro. I would have like to have seen less magnification and more depth with this lens. As is, it does a nice job but will be limited with its usefulness.

Mpow Fisheye

The fisheye lens may have the least amount of limitations. The 180-degree view will not fill the camera frame and there is some distortion along the edges of the photo. I cannot knock the fisheye too much because these characteristics are common with any fisheye lens. Of the three lenses, the fisheye performed the best.

Mpow MLens Collection: A nice accessory to have handy

Mpow MLens Collection

While there are some limitations in using the Mpow MLens set, I was pleasantly surprised by the lenses performance. Build quality is good and the lenses fit nicely on the Lumia 950.

The macro lens is somewhat limited in where it can be used, but you can create some rather interesting close-up images with some patience and practice. The wide-angle lens considerably opens up your camera's field of view and can be helpful capturing landscapes. The fisheye had the fewest issues and, like the macro lens, can create some interesting images.

Mpow MLens Fisheye

Overall, the Mpow MLenses are a nice set of accessories to have on hand to increase the versatility of your Windows Phone's cameras. The Mpow MLens is currently running under $20.00 at Amazon.com or, if you don't have access to Amazon.com, directly through Mpow for $25.00.

See at Amazon.com ($19.76) (opens in new tab) See at Mpow.com ($25.00){.nofollow}

George is the Reviews Editor at Windows Central, concentrating on Windows 10 PC and Mobile apps. He's been a supporter of the platform since the days of Windows CE and uses his current Windows 10 Mobile phone daily to keep up with life and enjoy a game during down time.

50 Comments
  • Lumia 850!
  • Yeah I think he meant the 830.... Unless he let something slip he shouldn't have :D
  • but he didn't mention the 950 XL too...
  • The MLens cover up the flash LED of L950XL, so it may not work well.
  • The flash is unusable even with 950, except if one loves oval shadows in the image.
  • Ha! Exactly my thought!
  • Will it support in L640 XL
  • 640XL , 1320 , 1520 & 950XL has cameras at a place where no lens kit can reach the rear camera..
  • We can use any similar product for 640XL???
  • Check AliExpress/eBay, you might find lenses that attach to your phone via magnets. You simply stick a metal ring around your camera (they come with a few of them) and the lens attaches to that. The usually go for $2-4 for a set of wide/fisheye/macro. I've been using such a kit and while it does come with some image quality loss, you cant get any better for the price.
  • what about the 535?
  • Would like to see a clip on telephoto lens too.
  • Totally agree. A tele (or two with different focal distances, or maybe a small zoom lens) would be much better and useful than the fisheye.
  • Can someone tell me the cool time app in the picture showing "ELEVEN FIFTEEN"?
  • Perfect Clock https://www.windowscentral.com/e?link=https2F%2Fclick.linksynergy.co... however most of the designs are available after paying a small fee
  • I will have to put these on my splurge list.
  • I will buy it cause we don't have a good Fisheye App
  • What about 1020
  • It's already perfect.
  • Friend just got a Olloclip. Works much better than this.... Albeit she has an iPhone.
  • How do you know? You don't.
  • How about no distortion with the wide-angle lens.....
  • Will they work on the L830 ?
  • No, the camera on the Lumia 830 is positioned too low.
  • I read the lenses work well for the 950, but what about the 950XL? Secondly, how's the flash obstruction? I see in one photo that the lenses appear to block the 950's triple LED flash.
  • Doesn't matter with the lenses as the flash is probe to produce shadows of the projection!
  • I believe it will block the flash. I have different on purchased from ebay at 2.99, lenses only with inbuilt magnet. Works well with Note 5 and does not block the flash. But I think 950xl bezel itself is magnetic and it repelled my lens.!!!
  • What is that clock live tile?????????
  • Perfect clock
  • The proof of the pudding is in the eating, not "the proof is in the pudding".
  • What? That is a common phrase...the eating is implied. Geesh
  • Sorry dude, "the proof is in the pudding" is a commonly used expression, 100 years ago, you'd be spot on, but its 2015 and no one says "the proof of the pudding is in the eating" anymore...except my Gam Gam...and she's 103.
  • I'm actually curious to try the wide angle one while filming concerts with my 950. Will have to look into this.
  • I still have lenses from my 920 days, those were magnetic though.
  • Are these the same thing as the $3 kit from ebxy?  Or it got better optic?  Too bad it don't work with 830
  • What about a zoom clipper for my 950xl, that would be very useful for me (not good image quality to zoom in ordinary picture, to less detail and to much fuzz)
  • Camera is great, camera app? I think not yet
  • Does the 930 work?
  • I've seen these at Walgreens or CVS for $9.99... Might be cheaper versions of them.
  • Probably worth a $20 splurge to try. It'd be better to run down my Microsoft store to grab stuff like this.
  • The lens set I have uses a magnetic ring glued to the back of my phone. Doesn't obstruct the screen like the clip system. I took some pretty awesome macro shots of snowflakes the other day.
  • Looks awesome. I'm a photographer, but have been surprised how much I enjoy my phone's camera results. All drawbacks listed, as far as I can see, are totally common.
  • I really don't understand these mini lenses. I bought into the hype of it a few years ago and wasted my 10 dollars. There's just no way I'm going to carry these all the time. If I'm going to carry extra I will just bring my Sony and call it a day. If I want details from a macro lens I'd use my professional camera to do it. Cool to mess with, but not really worth the cash imo.
  • will this work with the 535?
  • Is it compatible with lumia 1520?
  • OMG, another branded Chinese product, which you can buy for $2 on AliExpress, etc. The quality is... ewww :/
  • This will be great if it can work with Lumia 1020.
  • Invader9000 i will let you know will try mine when I get home.
  • Invader9000 that's a negative on the 1020 front, the camera hump stretches the clip out to the max if the hump was not there the potentially it would work, the leses fo unscrew from the clip so if you are a DIY/Modder/ then you could "make alterations"
  • Mine just arrived from amazon uk a day early so thanks amazon for the speedy service, they fit the L950XL no problem, and to all those saying that they cover the flash, yes they do but my friend has an olloclip costing circa £60.00 and they also cover the flash so for £12.99 I ain't complaining and the image quality is on point (not looked at them on the big screen just phone as supposed to be working) the wide angle does give a slight black edge to the right of the image and the fish eye has the standard black boarder but the best is the macro and clipped on to the friends iPhone he got a closer image than his ollo but you could argue the lens is further away but you would be splitting hairs. Glad I made the purchase and thanks to WCentral for the artical. Now I don't need to stick the horrible magnetic ring on the front of my phone.